Timber Window Frames vs UPVC Window Frames for Australian Climate

Heritage putty faced Arched Window Glazed by Adelaide Glaziers

Both timber and UPVC window frames have their own sets of advantages and disadvantages when considering the diverse Australian climate. Let’s compare the two:

Timber Window Frames


  1. Aesthetic Appeal: Timber offers a classic and warm appearance that many homeowners find appealing.
  2. Thermal Insulation: Wood is a natural insulator and can provide excellent thermal performance.
  3. Customization: Timber frames can be painted or stained in various colors to match the property’s style.
  4. Sound Insulation: Timber provides good sound insulation.
  5. Structural Strength: Timber is strong and can support large panes of glass.
  6. Renewable Resource: Timber is biodegradable and, if sourced sustainably, can be an eco-friendly choice.


  1. High Maintenance: Timber requires regular maintenance to protect it from weathering, rot, and pests.
  2. Cost: Timber frames can be more expensive than UPVC.
  3. Vulnerability to Weather and Pests: Timber can be susceptible to warping, termites, and other issues.
  4. Fire Risk: Timber may not be suitable in areas prone to bushfires.

UPVC Window Frames


  1. Low Maintenance: UPVC frames require minimal maintenance and don’t need regular painting or sealing.
  2. Cost-Effective: Generally, UPVC windows are less expensive than timber frames.
  3. Durability: UPVC is resistant to corrosion, rotting, and UV radiation, making it suitable for various climates.
  4. Thermal and Sound Insulation: UPVC can offer good thermal and sound insulation.
  5. Energy Efficiency: UPVC windows can achieve high energy efficiency ratings.
  6. Recyclability: Modern UPVC can be recycled.


  1. Aesthetic Limitations: UPVC may not offer the same classic look as timber and may have limited finishes.
  2. Thermal Expansion: UPVC can expand and contract more than timber with temperature changes.
  3. Structural Strength: UPVC may not be as strong as timber, potentially limiting its use in larger installations.
  4. Perceived Quality: Some homeowners may perceive UPVC as a lower-quality material compared to timber.
  5. Environmental Concerns: Production and disposal of UPVC can have environmental implications if not managed properly.


In the context of the Australian climate, the choice between timber and UPVC window frames comes down to factors such as aesthetic preference, budget, maintenance willingness, and specific environmental conditions. While timber offers a classic look and natural insulation, it requires more maintenance. UPVC, on the other hand, is durable and low-maintenance but may not have the same aesthetic appeal. Both options can be adapted to suit different climatic needs, making the decision largely dependent on personal preferences and regional considerations.


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